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What do you take with you?

Develop yourself to the best of your ability

When the grandmother of Rabbi Meir Chodesh’s wife emigrated from Poland to Israel, one of the questions she had to fill in on the entry form was, “What are you taking with you and how do you plan to make a living in Israel? Rebbetzin Hutner looked at the form and wrote down: ‘Bitachon’.

Generally, bitachon is translated as “confidence”. It is a powerful sense of optimism and confidence, knowing that Hashem is good and that He is the only one Who is n control, and that whatever happens to you, you need not have any fears of worries.

It does not mean that you sit around with your arms crossed waiting for everything to go the way you would like it to. It means that you do roll up your sleeves and take advantage of all the opportunities Hashem gives you to achieve your goals.

Developing Bitachon does not happen overnight.

There can be the realisation that if something bad happens to you, it will be good for the future. You don’t know what that good will be, but you trust that that good will come.

A deeper realisation is that even if something bad happens to you now that in itself is something good. The latter is often much harder to understand, but if we realise that a loving father would never give anything bad and meditate on that, that realisation will grow.

I thought about these two steps this morning.

Finally quit my coffee addiction, you don’t want to know how bad the headache was, and even muscle pain in my neck muscles.

During the headache, I thought: this is annoying for now, but soon I will be fine, because I will be rid of this nasty habit.
This fits the first description above about bitachon.

But what could the second one be? What makes experiencing the headache itself a good thing. I realised that I actually thought very easily about people who had an addiction and claimed they couldn’t get rid of it. People without perseverance, I thought. Now I realise much better that physical symptoms, psychological symptoms, can be so great that it is unbearable and that people can indeed not quit an addiction or can do so with tremendous difficulty. In short, an important life lesson that makes me more understanding of a problem that others may experience.

Bitachon the confidence that your own actions will be supported by Hashem if it is according to His will and that what happens to you will one day be for the better, that you will be better off in any way.

In short what do I take into the day: Bitachon that the day will be good as Hashem will give the day.

By Angelique Sijbolts

Sources: Het Heilige in het Alledaagse by Alan Morinis

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